Last month GM Nigel Short wrote a rather provocative piece in his column for the Guardian. That same article was later reproduced in Chessbase.com.
It is not often one sees the police summoned to attend a chess federation meeting, but that is what happened in Kabwe, Zambia, last week. Lewis Ncube, who stands to become the next FIDE vice-president should Kirsan Ilyumzhinov be re-elected in June, said the police presence was essential to ensure order. The opposition, headed by (Air Force) Colonel Barb Kausu, argued that the move was a deliberate attempt to intimidate the voters.
It all seems as if the British GM, a backer of Kok's Right Move campaign, is attempting to damage Ncube's candidacy. Naturally, Lewis Ncube, an ex-head of the Chess Federation of Zambia, is an unhappy man.
Courtesy of The Chess Drum, we now have Ncube's response. On Short's remark concerning the presence of an army, Ncube says:
Nigel's phantom army claims therefore need to be viewed in the context of his desire to discredit any individual or country that does not share his declared mission for whatever reason. It seems that if you do not agree with him you are fair game for any fabricated attack. With this background one begins to wonder how much of his pronouncements during his trip around Commonwealth and African countries were based on fantasy.
Who do we believe? Whatever happens, it is difficult to disagree with The Chess Drum: "In the coming weeks, the Chess Fidelity and The Right Move campaigns will ratchet up their activity to garner votes for the future of chess. It is hopeful that each party will take the interest of Africa and other developing nations to heart."